Shetland MSP and Scottish Liberal Democrat, Beatrice Wishart, quizzed the Scottish Government on support for social landlords to retrofit buildings in order to meet modern energy efficient standards and future-proof the housing stock. As it stands social landlords, such as housing associations, are required to update ageing properties to modern energy efficient standards. These same properties may require further upgrades in the future as building standards change.
The minister responded that ‘much more will be needed’ outlining the establishment of a task-force to tackle decarbonisation in the housing stock. Ms Wishart was told the Scottish Government would commit funds to assist in tackling the issue. The minister also confirmed that additional spending would be needed to upgrade housing when Ms Wishart emphasised the need for higher levels of investment in areas, including the Highlands and Islands, with higher levels of fuel poverty.
Ms Wishart has previously raised the issue of housing shortages in the isles and the negative impact on depopulation. Ms Wishart has also pursued the Scottish Government to tackle fuel poverty.
After the session Ms Wishart said:
“Housing is fundamental. Ensuring all our homes adhere to energy efficient standards will be one way to help reach net zero, protect the planet and reduce household energy costs.
“It is one thing to build new houses to the most modern designs and energy efficient standards. It is quite another to retrofit and upgrade existing housing stock, let alone future-proof them, without more investment in terms of money and resource.
“Energy efficient standards change and social landlords must update properties accordingly. In the long term future-proofing is likely to be cost saving.”
Notes to Editors
You can see Ms Wishart’s question here.